Jason continued: "Recent discussion amongst friends had all of us coming up with different names such as: Grand Haven Library, Grand Haven District Library, Loutit District Library, Loutit Library and even Grand Haven Loutit District Library. There seems to be a history of the name changing a few times over the past decades, which left us all a little confused."
It is Loutit District Library, which will be celebrating its 100th birthday next year.
But it has only been Loutit District Library since 1999.
On Jan. 3, 1914, the original Grand Haven Public Library opened its doors. With funding for the building supplied by the Andrew Carnegie Foundation, and operational money from the City of Grand Haven, the library operated as a city library for its first 85 years.
Some founding Library Board members names may be familiar to you — Dr. Elizabeth Hofma, Nathaniel Robbins, C.W. Cotton, Dr. William DeKleine and William H. Loutit.
"In 1967, with a generous grant from the Loutit Foundation, the City of Grand Haven opened the newly renamed Loutit Library at our present location, 407 Columbus," explained the current library director, John Martin. "The name was changed to honor the gift, but the library remained a department of the city."
In 1999, the district library was formed under Michigan Public Act 24 of 1989, in which multiple governmental units can agree to form and fund a library. The city joined with Grand Haven and Robinson townships, the City of Ferrysburg, and the Grand Haven school district to create Loutit District Library, governed by an eight-member board composed of members appointed by each of these governmental units.
"Like Jason and his friends, we also hear the library called by many different names — and pronunciations," Martin said. "Regardless of the name, we are honored and grateful that the residents of our area utilize the many services and programs offered, and continue to show their support for the cultural, educational and recreational role we play in the community."
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